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Planning for Italy: Indecision 2009

Planning for Italy is FUN! I think I am currently driving my boyfriend and friends crazy with constant chatter about hotels, rental cars, train tickets, and the like. I haven't been to Italy since the summer of 2004 so this is a pretty big deal!

Since I got my ticket (late January) I have gone back and forth about how to structure the trip. I'll have fifteen nights there, and currently (but changing every day!) the plan looks like this:

  • Three nights in Lecce, Puglia, staying at the Casa dei Mercanti. Lecce is supposed to be beautiful and I look forward to exploring this Baroque city.
  • Two nights in Rome, with the arrival of the wonderful J.! Possible hotels: The Inn at the Roman Forum, or Residenza Canali. Or somewhere else! Definitely one of the indecisions.
  • Four nights in Bologna. I was going to stay at the Orologio, one of the Bologna Art Hotes, but now I switched to the Commercianti (also an Art Hotel). The Orologio is cheaper on the weekend but the fourth night, a weekday, was twice the price, so it made sense to go with the slightly more expensive Commercianti. Still, 99 euro a night for a double at a four star hotel seems good! (I just checked again now and the average nightly rate now is 14!)
  • This were the serious indecision comes in! We have six nights and the idea is to meander through the north of Italy, mainly the Alto Adige, and end up in Salzburg, visiting J.'s friend. I can't decide whether to spend the majority of the nights in one place, or a new place every night, or how long to stay in Salzburg... We are also considering visiting J.'s friends outside of Munich. So I'll have to get back to you on this one!

We will use trains to go to Lecce and then Bologna, but probably rent a car for the last portion, although trains are a possibility as well. Some of the places I am considering between Bologna and Salzburg are Trento, Bolzano, Bressanone, Castelrotto, and villages inbetween. I don't really want to stay in too many places, but we'll figure this out when we know when is the best time to visit friends. We could skip the two nights in Rome, but Rome is always tempting - and how fun to share it with someone special!

Planning has been FUN so far and it is amazing how many reviews and opinions are out there. Just reading and planning and dreaming is such a treat! I can't believe that in just a month and a half I'll be sitting on a train in Italy, listening to my favorite language...

Comments (6)

Oh it sounds like so much fun! I didn't realize it had been that long since you'd been there. I say, don't skip Rome!


Hi Snail, this is exciting. I just wish we would be there at the same time but you are going at a better time than we are.
If you go to Bolzano, be sure to see the iceman--a truly unique and interesting exhibition.

In Rome we enjoyed the http://www.hotelteatropace.com which is right off Piazza Navona--a great location for just a couple nights in Rome.

Planning is so much a part of a good trip. Have fun.

It sounds like a great trip. We stayed in the Dolomite area. It would be hard to decide. There is so much to see. We stayed one night in Bressanone and like it. I'm not certain it would be good for a week. I've also hurt great things about Castelrotto. So when are you going?

How exciting that you are going to Lecce! That is on my wish list. I am thinking of a Southern Italy trip next year with Amalfi Coast and Lecce. Can't wait to hear what you think of Lecce.

Have you checked out the Nicholas Inn in Rome? Has tons of great reviews and is not too expensive. Not sure if the rates are the same as the hotels you have listed. I am still thinking maybe Rome for a couple of nights. It is booked though when I would be there.


Since it looks like we are staying stateside this year, I love that you are going and I can live vicariously through your planning and your trip - Bologna is on my list of places to get to some day.


Chiocciola, first of all I love your headline: "Indecision 2009" -- it's so Jon Stewart!

Do you fly into Puglia, or somewhere else but immediately take the train to Puglia? I'm flying into Rome because I got what I thought was a half-decent airfare, but as soon as I land I'll be heading straight for Parma. Which makes for a long day, but I don't mind -- I'm so dazed after the flight (since I never sleep) that I'm not much good for anything except getting on and off trains (hopefully, the correct train this time!)

The Commercianti in Bologna looks so very posh, and at such a fabulous rate -- great catch!

In Rome, I've always thought the Canali looks nice, and very central. I'm still a big fan of my old favourite, Residenza in Farnese, which is right beside the Palazzo Farnese. I think it's about the same price, although the management does show some price flexibility......

As for the indecision, I certainly understand that! As a Slow Traveller, I try not to change hotels too often. But, I also believe that it's hard to get to know a place unless you stay a night or two, and see what it's like at different times. That's no help in your decision making, but I can say I understand the dilemna!

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